The gathering, which will involve about 22 educators, is the second step in USD 235's implementation plan, which began Oct. 12 with literacy training for kindergarten through second-grade teachers in the morning and all-staff literacy training in the afternoon. Today, kindergarten through second-grade teachers will begin deconstructing anchor standards in language arts and math.
USD 235 Superintendent Randy Rockhold said that after the standards are deconstructed, teachers will write lesson plans and deal with the actual instructional strategies that are going to be used to implement the standards.
Additional training for teachers will be held next semester. Rockhold had earlier said one of the major objectives of CCS is to make sure students have a strong depth of knowledge, rather than just relying on memorization, which fades with time.
The district also is applying for the National Clean Diesel Rebate Program, administered by the Environmental Protection Agency, which provides $25,000 toward the purchase of each new bus that a district purchases to replace an older, less energy efficient vehicle. Rockhold said the district is applying for two buses and that the applications are competitive, with a limited number of awards.
He added that the district's older buses require excessive idling time (about 165 hours per bus per year), which increases fuel costs to the district. The newer buses would not require the extra idling time. The district currently runs eight buses.
During Monday's USD 235 regular monthly board meeting, results of the state attendance audit were released, which found the district was down 4.5 FTE students. The current FTE is funded by the state at $3,838 per student, which would mean a decrease of $17,271 to the district. Rockhold said after the reductions in funding, the district will still be "on the positive side of things" because its spending projections were more than actual costs.
Rockhold added that should the legislature pass Gov. Sam Brownback's tax cuts, his district is at risk of losing more than $424,000 for fiscal year 2014. According to a report released by The Consensus Estimating Group last Wednesday, estimated revenue for the fiscal year 2014 would be down 11.4 percent.
"Right now, we are funded at $3,838 per pupil," Rockhold said. "If you take 11.4 percent of that, that's a loss of $437 to the base. If you calculate our FTE, which is 971.9, it would cost our district $424,327. We've already had so many cuts, we couldn't deal with that."
In other business:
* It was announced that Uniontown High School was awarded a Certificate of Merit as part of the 10th Annual Challenge Awards, administered by the Confidence in Kansas Public Education Task Force for its eighth-graders performance on the math assessment tests.
*The board approved $4,000 to install metal rooftops on the press box, concession stand and a storage building after the roofs were damaged by wind.
* The board also approved $3,786 to repair approaches on a high jump pit and two long jump pits.
* It was announced that district vehicles were involved in two separate deer/vehicle accidents. One involved a vehicle transporting cheerleaders to Kansas City in which repairs total $4,200. Another accident involved a special education bus, which is still waiting damage estimates.